Visiting The Magical Istrian Mountain Towns in Croatia

Though the Istrian Coast gather much of the fame for its pristine blue seas and beautiful Venetian towns, another side of Istria should not be missed while visiting the area. The Istrian interior, a mixture of rolling hills, fertile plains and pine forests with medieval hilltop villages is just as impressive and interesting, making a day or two visit an ideal way to gasp in the experience! If you are the kind of person who gets enchanted by Toscany style Plaines, the Istrian Interior is sure to impress you just as much.  Vineyard-dotted Hills and Medieval Towns The pace definitly slows down from the buzzing tourist lifestyle of the coast, but that’s actually a good thing! The main activity in this part of Croatia isn’t tourism as much, but rather wine-making, olive culture, asparagus harvesting and most importantly, truffle hunting (which you can actually take […]

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3 days in Pula, Epicenter of Istria in Croatia

So many people rush to Rome to see the Romain Arena without knowing that such constructions can be found in so many other places, and such places include tiny little Pula, a city in the Istrian Peninsula in Croatia of only 90 000 people. Apart from the beachgoers coming for the Croatian sun every summer, the impressive Romain arena gets little attention to what it deserves. It is actually one of the best preserved Roman amphitheatres in the world.  A Romain Capital with “Italian influenced” Croatia Arriving in Istria from Dalmatia or the Zagreb Area will be somewhat of a shock. Pula, the biggest city in Istria and eighth in the country, definitely has an Italian flavour left from its past. In fact, it was part of Italy for so long that most people will speak Italian as a second language after Croatian. The City […]

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Visiting Zadar in Croatia – The New Dalmatian Coast Hot Spot

The third biggest city in Croatia and quickly developing as an alternative for Split as a holiday base, Zadar really surprised me and exceeded my expectations. Enjoying the same quality of the Dalmatian coast as its southern brothers, Zadar has plenty to offer for the seasonal tourist looking for sun, beach and culture. Trying to cash in on Tourism With Tourism in mind, Zadar is aiming big nowadays with its cruise port which can receive the biggest fleet of cruise ships in the Mediterranean. Many of the biggest cruise companies have chosen Zadar as a regular stop to explore the Adriatic sea route, along with Venice, Split and Dubrovnik, as it is strategically located as an easy stop to explore other beautiful cities in the region, such as Sibenik. With the advent of Cheap airlines now connecting Zadar directly to major European cities, its popularity […]

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Kaliningrad in Russia – In the Shadow of Konigsberg

Once a very important city in the Prussian empire and now an integral part of Russia, this little enclave to the baltic sea hold its share of history. Its strategic location between the Curonian spit was seen by several empires to be a must keep area, which explains why it is awkwardly separated from the Russian Mainland. A lot of Kaliningrad was lost during world war 2, which is sad because It was once considered one of Europe’s most beautiful cities. Even St-Petersburg is said to be built on the bases of Kaliningrad. The Missing Piece of the Baltic States It’s no secret that I consider the 3 Baltic States as one of my favorite parts of th world. And this is probably why Kaliningrad was so high on my list, as it shares the same attributes as its neighbors. With the Curonian spit north […]

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Athens On & Off the Beaten Track – 3 Days City Guide

Athens is this city where you can spend endless time exploring every corner of every street and you will always find something interesting. It’s just incredible how much a single city can hold, its a playground for history lovers, having literally layers over layers of civilizations stacked on top of each other, dating back more over 5000 years ago. On top of this, Greek people happen to have an extremely refined sense of design and their creativity gave birth to tons of stylish restaurants, cafes and bars spread around the city. These places are focused more on the experience rather than only consumption. I’ve been to Athens several times,  and usually the first visit to Athens is the same for everybody: Visit the same most important sights: the Acropolis, the Parthenon, at least 3 museums and enjoying the streets of  Plaka in the center. All of […]

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Visit Crete: 2 to 3 Days Itinerary in Chania

Ever since I came to Chania 15 years ago as a novice traveler, I’ve been bragging about it as my favorite city in Greece. So being here again after such a long time definitely brought excitement to rediscover it. Chania offers a different feeling of the typical islands of the Cyclades with their white and blue architecture. Chania has a Phoenician, Venetian and Ottoman background where many remnants are still visible today. But its history goes even further with traces that are harder to see, such as its Minoan roots that date over 3500 years. Some open-air Minoan Archaeological sites can be found in the center of the old town. The most scenic part is concentrated around the Venetian port, which ads an interesting taste of Ottoman occupation, especially with the mosque of Kioustsouk Hasan situated right on the port on the eastern side. For me, […]

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Visiting Valletta, Malta: World Capital of Balconies

Malta is one of those European countries that “awe’s” me as soon as I set foot on its streets. The proof that a city doesn’t need any fancy activities to make it a great one. A short walk around Valletta, Malta’s tiny capital of less than 10000 people, will convince anybody that preserving its authenticity and showcasing its historical traits is the secret to making any city a great one! I’ve been in Malta for the first time in 10 years ago, and it hasn’t changed that much since then, except for the obvious restorations of the walls. At the time I had the opportunity to dig deeper into the suburbs of Valletta and all around the Island, which is definitely worth it! Mdina is the other highlight that I wish I had time to visit again, but this time I was on a short […]

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The Canary Islands: What Every Island on Earth Should Look Like!

After a nice 4 months in south-east Asia where I had the chance to visit four countries while settling in their capitals to get some work done, it was time to hit the road again and like almost every year, I am back to Europe on time for Spring and the Summer Holiday! I’m pretty excited about many pans I have for the next months and since it’s still a little cold on the continent, I am starting my adventures in the Canary Islands off the coast of western Africa, more specifically on two of them: Tenerife and La Palma. I’ve visited many islands through my travels, actually I visited all of the islands countries of the world. Among them, many of the most popular islands still “under control” by European nations. I must say that contrary to what many people think, staying on an island […]

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Cities I’ve Been Map (188/196 Countries) – Update December 2017

Each year or so, I update my map with the app “Cities I’ve Been” app on Facebook, and have done so for the last 10 years. This was my way to track my way through the world when I was at the stage of going anywhere whenever I felt like it and wasn’t necessarily counting the countries I’ve been to. I’ve never really been a “Country Counter” until I was getting close to 150 and newspapers started asking for my current count, as well as I wanted to have a way to measure the distance I have traveled. As a world adventurer, my Travel Map is really what I am proud of, much more than my “countries Ive been” map. It is really not that really that hard anymore to travel the 196 countries as it once was with all the flights getting cheaper. There […]

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Visiting Angola – One of my Favorite Cities in Africa (my 188/196 country visited)

Angola was my last country of the 5 Portuguese colonies in Africa after Sao Tome and Principe, and I would have come much earlier if t wasn’t for the exhaustive visa procedures that are so hard that I had to wait to my 188th country to pay it a visit. Fortunately for my arrival, I had some contacts to receive me. Some Angolan friends from 5 years ago when I lived in Salvador de Bahía in Brazil. Young Angolan Capitan And what a reception! Thanks to my friend Karina (photo above) who warmly welcomed me with arms wide open, I had the opportunity to see Luanda as locals do it! With a carefully prepared plan she had prepared, Karina and I rumbled the capital from navigated to nearby islands, attending he nieces baptism as well as partying the night away in trendy Luanda Beach clubs […]

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